David H. Trinklein
Horticulture State Specialist
Division of Plant Sciences

Why plant vegetables?

Home production of vegetables has been increasing in popularity in recent years.  In addition to saving on the family food bill, the availability of fresh, inexpensive produce from the family garden is conducive to maintaining good dietary habits by eating more vegetables.

Planning is the first step in establishing a vegetable garden. Table 1 lists many of the vegetables commonly grown in home gardens, along with other information useful when planning a vegetable garden.

What variety should I plant?

The varieties listed in Table 2 represent the “cream of the crop.” They do not include all of the good ones. In selecting varieties, we primarily consider yield, quality and disease resistance as experienced under Missouri conditions.

When should I plant?

Planting dates depend on where you live. Find your county on the map in Figure 1. Note which planting region you are in. Use the dates given for your region in Table 2. If you live in the Ozark Plateau area, note that you use “north” planting dates. The higher elevation in that area results in later spring and earlier fall frosts.

Some vegetables may be planted for a fall crop. When a fall crop is possible, a second set of dates is listed under the dates for spring planting.

Hardiness zones map of Missouri.
Figure 1. Missouri planting regions.